Stainless steel is the most significant and most efficient steel used for appliances in washrooms, kitchens, and other parts of the house. Stainless steel is popular for its beautiful appearance, shine, and sparkle.
Though stainless steel is more resistant to staining than other types of steel, there are possibilities of stainless steel getting stains. This article presents how to remove stains from stainless steel sinks.
What Is Stainless Steel?
Stainless steel is an alloy made up of many different metals. It contains 10-17 % chromium, 3 -5 % copper, and 3 – 5 % nickel, with the majority of other elements present in lesser amounts but sufficient for their function in this type of metal. Stainless steel is not only long-lasting, but it is also corrosion-resistant.
What Causes Stains On Stainless Steel Sink?
The stainless steel surface has a layer of chromium oxide that protects it from corrosion and inhibits rust development.
Unfortunately, these protective layers will deteriorate with time, resulting in pitting or staining. Furthermore, it may lead to more severe problems, such as corrosion where water can re-enter, causing greater harm.
How To Remove Stains From Stainless Steel Sink
Stainless steel is a wonderful material for kitchen sinks; however, it does not look good if the surface is stained. The type of stain determines the method used to remove the stain from your sink.
1. Acid Stains
Strong acids with a pH less than 1.0 should be avoided to keep your stainless steel from rusting because they are generally corrosive to the metal and can damage it over time, even when used with caution.
When removing acid stains, wear protective gloves first because these solutions are harsh and can harm your skin. Then, proceed with the steps below.
• Rinse the stained area with water. If the area is vertical, you can use a spray bottle.
• Mix equal parts of baking soda and water to make a paste and press it onto the discoloration. When combined in this way, the paste will adhere better.
• Allow the paste to rest on top of the stain for 30 minutes.
• Wipe it away using a moist towel.
• If there is no change in the color of the stain, you can apply an ammonia solution. Simply combine equal parts ammonia and water and apply the solution to the acid stains.
• Once you have eliminated the stains, thoroughly clean your sink with water. Remove any remaining chemicals with a soft cloth and dry your sink using a paper towel.
2. Bleach And Chlorine Stains
Chlorine is a chemical that can corrode stainless steel. If you spill bleach on your sink, it will turn dull brown or gray due to the presence of dozens of different chemicals in this bleaching agent that can leave an irreparable stain as proof for years.
This should not be a problem if your sink is exposed to chlorine or chloride-containing compounds for short periods of time, such as salty water or chlorine bleach. However, if the exposure is prolonged, the staining may become permanent.
- Make a paste by combining equal parts water and baking soda.
- Apply the paste to any stains you see.
- Allow the paste to remain on the stain for 10-15 minutes.
- Wipe the paste away using a wet towel.
- After that, spray vinegar on the sink. Vinegar is acidic; therefore, it will help dissolve these stains; nevertheless, it is not so acidic that it will damage your sink. Ensure not to let too much drop-down inside, as the acidity could harm over time due to corroded pipelines beneath ground level.
- Allow all of the ingredients to settle for roughly 20 minutes.
- Remove any substances by wiping them clean.
3. Iron And Rust Stains
Iron staining can occur when people rub their stainless-steel sinks with steel wool. Small bits of iron may be left behind, lowering the chromium concentration on the surface.
When the chromium concentration falls below 10%, it no longer protects the steel, and rust begins to form. However, once the iron fragments and the rest are removed, the chromium oxide layer can rebuild itself and undo the harm.
Method – 1
• In a mixing bowl, combine 1 cup of regular laundry detergent and two tablespoons of table vinegar.
• Add enough hot water to make a paste-like consistency, but not so runny that it runs all over the place or won’t stick well to the stains; if none are available, use paper towels instead.
• Once combined, thoroughly apply the paste over the stains and leave it to settle for about an hour.
• When you wipe the paste away, the rust should be gone. If not, perform the above steps once again.
• Now, thoroughly rinse and wipe down the sink to remove all of the tiny fragments of metal that created the rust.
Method – 2
- Make a paste with one tablespoon of baking soda and two cups of warm water.
- Apply the paste to the rust with a gentle toothbrush and gently scrub the area.
- Rinse it away when the stains have been removed. Rinse the baking soda with warm water.
- Rinse well or wipe off the sink when it has dried completely.
4. Hard Water Stains
If you don’t have a water softener, mineral deposits may build up on the surface of your sink over time. Rust stains can be caused by dissolved iron, while calcium deposits might cause cloudiness on the steel surface.
- Make a paste using half baking soda and half water.
- Allow the paste to settle for 10 minutes after applying it to the stain.
- Then, using a moist cloth, wipe away the residue.
- Now make a solution of vinegar and lemon juice. Spray it on the previously applied area.
- Scrub the stains with a scrubber and leave it for 20 minutes.
- Rinse the sink under hot running water.
- Pour a few drops of olive oil and scrub the sink with a highly soft cloth to enhance its shine and sparkle.
5. Light And Minor Chemical Stains
Method 1: Vapor Cleansing Process
- To remove mild chemical stains, you will require a kettle, a spout, and a paper towel.
- To begin, get a kettle of hot water and a paper towel. Then, fill your sink with hot water and place a paper towel over the stain.
- Pour extra hot water onto the cloth to make it wet.
- Wait for 5 to 10 minutes after pouring water to allow the sink’s surface to cool.
- Finally, blot the stains away with a dry paper towel before rinsing your sink with clean water.
Method 2: Baking Soda and Liquid Dish Soap Or Washing Detergent
If the previous method does not remove all the stains, you will need to make a baking soda solution.
- Mix baking soda and liquid dish soap to form a good paste. You can use washing detergent instead of dish soap. Make sure to use an equal amount of both, and if required, add additional water to make a smooth paste.
- Dab the paste with an old toothbrush.
- Scrub the discoloration gently along the grain of the stainless steel.
- If you are happy with the outcomes, get some warm water and rinse the paste.
- After that, wipe the surface of your sink with a paper towel.
6. Brown Stains
Calcium and minerals in foods can make your stainless steel sink brown or cloudy. Lemon juice is a good remedy for these brown stains. Apply lemon juice to the sink and start scrubbing with a sponge. Leave it for 20 mins. Finally, rinse it with normal water.
How To Prevent Stains On Stainless Steel Sink
Prevention is better than cure. If you take care of your sink properly, you can prevent stains on it. Follow the below methods:
1. Rinse your sink after each use: Because soap dishes contain chlorides, rinsing them helps prevent the appearance of water spots and corrosion.
2. Scrub in the direction of the grain: This will help blend your sink’s surface texture.
3. Avoid abrasive cleaners: You should never clean your stainless sink with regular abrasive cleaning agents. These cleaners have the potential to discolor and even ruin your sink.
4. Make use of bleach-free products: Bleach has the potential to discolor your stainless-steel sink. So you must avoid using any bleach-containing cleaning product to clean your sink. However, if your sink comes into touch with bleach, clean it promptly with plenty of water.
5. Dry Thoroughly: Finally, washing off and drying the surface of your stainless steel sink is essential to avoid water spots or rust over time. Ensure your dry towel is clean and free of old oil for the most significant results.
Stainless steel sinks are susceptible to a variety of stains. So, before selecting how to remove the stains, you must first identify the type of stain. This is because various stains require different removal methods.